Stare Down – Conversations with Stella and Moon the Cat

I am Stella, Queen of the Olde English Bulldogges. I can’t talk now.

Me:        Then why did you introduce yourself?

Stella:    I can’t talk because I am in a stare down with Moon the Cat. It is intense. It is touch and go. But in the end, I am sure that my huge bulldog eyes will win.

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Me:        What do you say to that, Moon?

Moon the Cat:   Meow.

Stella:    Typical.

Me:        This is quite a contest. What are the rules?

Stella:    Ask her.

Moon the Cat:   Meooowww.

Stella:    Must I explain everything? Oh, all right. We stare each other in the eyes. No looking away.

Me:        Is blinking allowed?

Stella:    Of course. What do you think we are? Crazy?

Me:        I haven’t figured that out yet.

Stella:    Whoever looks away, moves away, or falls asleep first, loses!

Me:        Falling asleep is an option?

Stella:    The game can grow boring after a while.

Me:        What if someone interferes?

Stella:    Then we stare at them. Since they can’t stare in two directions at once, they lose.

Me:        This is just for you two, I take it.

Stella:    She is my nemesis and I am hers.

Me:        Okey dokey then. Well, see y’all later.

Stella:    Only if the stare down is still going and you want to play. Remember the rules. You lose.

 

 

Copyright 2017 H.J. Hill All Rights Reserved.

 

 

 

 

 

The Trophy

Doodlebug and Miss Sweetie still qualify as puppies. They are 9 month old litter mates, rambunctious and wild as…well. ..as young bulldogs. I was going to say March Hares, but bulldogs probably would not appreciate being compared to any variety of rabbit. They would admire their speed, but rabbits don’t possess those iconic bulldog fangs, something of which the bulldogs are justly proud.

A favorite game of theirs is to grab the scruff of the other’s neck, a particularly loose area of skin on bulldogs. One will grip the other, usually while they are in full gallop, Then let the wrestling begin. The grabber pulls the grab-ee down, they roll around for a few minutes and, turnabout being fair play, the grab-ee returns the favor. Doodlebug drags Miss Sweetie across the yard. Miss Sweetie takes her turn doing the same.

The whole game appears rough. It is. And they love it. They are best friends for life and their tit for tat is continually forgiven.

But Miss Sweetie may have gone a little too far during one of their games.

When it was time for them to come in from play to avoid the brutal heat, I opened the back door and Doodlebug rushed in, sans his new collar. Great. Okay. The search was on.

 

It didn’t take long. Out in the yard, refusing to come in, was Miss Sweetie with Doodlebug’s collar hanging from her mouth. I caught up with her and retrieved the stolen collar. Its latch was broken. She had grabbed him, not by the scruff of his neck, but by his collar. So much easier.

Her powerful jaws had cracked one side of the latch and she let her brother go, preferring to keep his collar as a trophy of victory. Doodlebug is stronger than she is and it is rare that she comes out on top in their contests.

Still, to her credit, she never gives up. This time she came away with something to prove her triumph.

Trophies are iffy things. Not everyone who has one deserves it.

I am reminded by Doodlebug’s broken collar –

It’s not much of a trophy if I tore it out of the rightful owner’s hands.

It’s not a victory if I claimed what was not mine.

It’s not a true victory if I didn’t play by the rules. (2 Timothy 2:5)

Did Miss Sweetie compete lawfully according to bulldog rules? I don’t know. They have not deigned to include me on those details. Perhaps someday I will understand them.

 

Copyright 2016 H. J. Hill All Rights Reserved.